Eddie Henderson, one of today's top and most original jazz trumpet players, joins one of today's best jazz bands when he performs on Friday with the Northern Illinois University Jazz Ensemble at North Scott High School in Eldridge. Ronald Carter, the director of the NIU Jazz Ensemble, has no peers as a jazz educator, and the matching of this singular jazz performer with this great band should make for a very special evening.

North Scott Jazz II opens the concert at 6:45 p.m., followed by North Scott Jazz I at 7:15. Henderson takes the stage at 8 p.m., and admission is $8 for adults and $5 for students and seniors.

Henderson was born in New York City October 26, 1940. His father sang with the Charioteers, and his mother danced as one of the Brown twins at the Cotton Club. Louis Armstrong gave Eddie his first few trumpet lessons at the age of nine.

Eddie moved with his family to San Francisco when he was 14 years old. He studied at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music from 1954 to '56. Around 1956, Miles Davis was a guest at Eddie Henderson's home during a Black Hawk Jazz Club residency and was impressed with Eddie's ability to perform his famous Sketches of Spain without a fluff but encouraged Henderson to seek his own originality.

Following Air Force service from 1958 to '61, Eddie became the first African American to compete for the National Figure Skating Championship, winning the Pacific and Midwestern titles.

The year 1961 was the beginning of Eddie pursuing dual careers - medicine and music. After receiving a bachelor of science in zoology at the University of California at Berkeley in 1964, he got his M.D. at Howard University in 1968. Eddie interned at San Francisco's French Hospital during 1968 and '69 and undertook a two-year residency in psychiatry at the University of California Hospital from 1969 to '71.

Henderson first got worldwide recognition for his jazz-trumpet playing from the popular recordings he made with Herbie Hancock's Mwandishi group during the early '70s. Other jazz performers Eddie has played with include Gary Bartz (1969-82), Pharoah Sanders (1973-82), Art Blakey (1973, '76, '77, and '82), Elvin Jones (1978-86), George Coleman (1982), Johnny Griffin (1983 and '88), Slide Hampton (1988), McCoy Tyner (1988-93), and Benny Golson (1992).

Over the years, Eddie Henderson has been a sideman on recordings for many jazz artists. Among the albums issued under his leadership are Phantoms, Think on Me, and Flight of Mind on Steeple Chase; Inspiration and Dark Shadows on Milestone; and Re Emergence on Sharp Nine Records.

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